Game Tracking Moving to Google Analytics
After receiving the bad news that the Memecounter viral tracking service is to be discontinued imminently, we’ve spent the last week or so checking out and testing alternatives. It’s surprising how few viable alternative services there are for tracking distributed Flash content, that provide the reporting functionality we need.
After testing out the main competitor, we quickly dismissed it. Despite the fact that many of our competitors are using this service now, we found it to be extremely unreliable, so just not a viable option for commercial advergames, where clients are relying on accurate reporting, with minimal downtime.
We ended up settling with Google Analytics Flash component. Obviously, Google Analytics is one of the most robust and reliable tracking systems out there. The Flash component allows tracking and advanced reporting across multiple hosts and because most of our clients already use Google Analytics, it makes sense to incorporate with their existing website reports. Plus, because we’re now using link tagging and Google Analytics custom reports to track traffic at the website receiving end, it makes sense to integrate more closely with that. Google Analytics gives much more advanced reports than Memecounter anyway, so it’s kind of an upgrade from the old system, as well as giving a complete solution within the one platform.
Another added bonus of using Google Analytics is we’re now able to do more advanced beta testing before general launch, where time allows. Tracking extra events on a small audience for a period before release enables us to analyse player progress in order to make small tweaks to gameplay and difficulty curves to create the best possible experience for players and ultimately the best possible exposure for your brand.
I’m pretty confident this should put us ahead of the competition in terms of being able to create the best experiences possible and allowing clients to see exactly how players are interacting with their brand, through the click-through to their website and exactly what they do when they get there. Where appropriate we’ll be using the new tracking system in all future advergames we produce.
Another downside of the Memecounter closure is the worldwide viral game chart now ceases to exist. Luckily Anthony Giallourakis created the great Advergames.com some time ago and it’s probably the best resource on the net to keep up with all the latest advergames. So go check it out.